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Diageo Blasts Bacardi over Captain Morgan Rum saga

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Diageo has launched a scathing attack on Bacardi over the Captain Morgan rum, US Virgin Islands saga. Diageo has accused Bacardi of scheming to protect subsidies at the expense of the economic stability of the US Virgin Islands.  Bacardi has insisted the dispute is about the appropriate use of taxpayers’ money.

Diageo North America has released the following statement from Guy L. Smith, executive vice president:

“An historic and innovative public-private initiative forged by the US Virgin Islands that would lift the US Virgin Islands’ economy out of crisis is under attack by the entrenched corporate interests of a wealthy family seeking to maintain their decades-long grip on rum subsidies.

“Bacardi Limited, which receives tens of millions of dollars a year in annual government rum subsidies, has made a calculated decision to try to drive a competitor out of the United States even though it would be a disaster for the US citizens of the Virgin Islands. And why is Bacardi doing this? They know that because of a quirk in federal law they can protect their huge government subsidies by driving Captain Morgan rum production anywhere rather than the US Virgin Islands.

“The company has been working behind the scenes in collaboration with other self-interested constituents and corporations and has used front groups and Puerto Rico politicians to make spurious claims about the US Virgin Islands initiative.

“Nearly two years ago, the government of the US Virgin Islands seized an historic opportunity to modernize the centuries-old Caribbean rum industry through a landmark public-private initiative that both protects the environment and provides 30 years of economic stability for the US citizens of the Virgin Islands.

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Tuesday, September 26, 6:29 pm

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